Tunisian Islamist party says time to ‘bury’ democracy

1 / 3
Tunisian women, members of the radical Islamist party Hizb ut-Tahrir, attend a speech at the party headquarters in the Tunis suburb of Ariana. (AFP)
2 / 3
Tunisian women, members of the radical Islamist party Hizb ut-Tahrir, attend a speech at the party headquarters in the Tunis suburb of Ariana. (AFP)
3 / 3
Tunisian women, members of the radical Islamist party Hizb ut-Tahrir, attend a speech at the party headquarters in the Tunis suburb of Ariana. (AFP)
Updated 16 April 2017

Tunisian Islamist party says time to ‘bury’ democracy

TUNIS: The Tunisian branch of the radical Islamist Hizb ut-Tahrir movement, which calls for Islamic law and wants to unify Muslims into a caliphate, said Saturday it was time to “bury” democracy.
“Democracy no longer attracts anyone,” the movement’s politburo chief Abderraouf Amri told its annual conference.
“It is time to announce its death and work to bury it.”
Hizb ut-Tahrir is banned in several countries and Tunisian authorities regularly accuse it of “disturbing public order.”
Hundreds of party members took part in the congress near Tunis, praising “the caliphate, savior of humanity” and denouncing “persecution” by the democratic system.
It said it was the victim of “attempts to prohibit and hinder” its activities.
Mehdi Ben Gharbia, a minister overseeing relations with civil society, said he had filed a request earlier this month for a one-month suspension of the group’s activities over its “attacks against Tunisia’s republican system.”
Tunisia’s government in September asked a military court to outlaw the movement, created in the 1980s but only legalized in 2012 following the overthrow the previous year of longtime strongman Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.
Interior Minister Hedi Majdoub has called the group “a party that does not recognize the civilian character of the state.”
Hizb ut-Tahrir’s 2016 Tunisian conference was banned for “security reasons.”
Tunisia has been in a state of emergency since a deadly 2015 jihadist attack against presidential guards.


Turkey, Russia seal deal for Karabakh ‘peacekeeping center’

Updated 20 min 51 sec ago

Turkey, Russia seal deal for Karabakh ‘peacekeeping center’

  • The deal comes after days of talks between Turkish and Russian officials about how the two regional powers would jointly implement a Moscow-brokered cease-fire
  • Technical details for setting up the joint center were concluded and an agreement was signed

ANKARA: Turkey and Russia have agreed to monitor a truce over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region from a joint peacekeeping center, Ankara’s defense ministry said on Tuesday.
The deal comes after days of talks between Turkish and Russian officials about how the two regional powers would jointly implement a Moscow-brokered cease-fire signed this month between Armenia and Azerbaijan.
Technical details for setting up the joint center were concluded and an agreement was signed, the defense ministry said in a statement, adding that it would begin work “as soon as possible.”
Turkey is a staunch ally of Azerbaijan and has fervently defended its right to take back the Nagorno-Karabakh lands Baku lost to ethnic Armenian separatists in a 1988-94 war.
The truce deal ended more than six weeks of fighting that claimed more than 1,400 lives and saw ethnic Armenians agree to withdraw from large parts of the contested region of Azerbaijan.
The Turkish parliament voted this month to deploy a mission to “establish a joint center with Russia and to carry out the center’s activities.”
The deployment is set to last a year and its size will be determined by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Russia has said repeatedly that Turkey will have no troops on the ground under the truce deal’s terms.